The New Guy by Chris Collier
by Chris Collier
August 4th, 2021

The New Guy—What’s Your Why?

Small talk often includes a common question: “What do you do?” We’ve all heard it and we’ve all replied with our designated job title, time after time. But we’re rarely asked why we do what we do, even when the going gets rough. When Jimmy Nance, owner of TNT Window Tinting in Orange City, Fla., was diagnosed with COVID-19 on April 1, he leaned on his family and customers to keep moving forward.

Shut It Down

“We were three weeks booked, and it shut down everything,” Nance says. “[We began] calling customers and let them know that we had COVID and we would be canceling all of our appointments for the three weeks, and we would put them on standby.”

When Nance and his wife tested positive, so did 12 other members of their small church.

Nance and his wife fought COVID-19 together. (Photo courtesy of Jimmy Nance)

“My mom helped us with delivering food on the back porch,” Nance says. “We would just go out and get it after she left—medicine and everything.”

The first two weeks were difficult for Nance and his wife, but his greatest challenge arrived post-infection.

“When I was feeling like I was getting somewhere on day 14, my rib felt like it had cracked in my sleep,” Nance says. “I woke up with this sheer, cracked-rib pain and [started] coughing up blood. That’s what made me go to the hospital. That’s when they found the blood clots in my lung and admitted me to the intensive care unit (ICU).”

Nance was in the hospital for four days. On day three, doctors surgically inserted an inferior vena cava (IVC) filter to control the clots. It wasn’t until July 28 that he could declare himself clot-free.

‘One Car a Day’

“Once I got out of the hospital, my body did not want to go back to work,” Nance says. “I wanted to just sit in my chair and relax. And I knew that I couldn’t do that. I knew I had to do something. So I started with just one car a day. I just started booking a very light schedule to keep me from sitting. Mentally and physically—I had to go do something.”

Nance has pushed forward with force, but even now, life is far from normal.

“After having [COVID] and dealing with what I dealt with, life is different,” Nance says. “Life doesn’t just snap back to normal. It’s not my normal life as I’ve known it before COVID. I don’t feel normal. I’ve lost my muscle mass, [and] my legs have been affected by it. I’m not as strong as I was before COVID.”

Nance battled blood clots and competed at WFCT 2021. (Photo courtesy of Jimmy Nance)

At the 2021 International Window Film Conference and Tint-Off™ (WFCT), Nance’s perseverance was on display for all of The Sunshine State to take in. The fighter was announced as a finalist for both the Automotive Tint-Off™ and Architectural Tint-Off™ on day three of the event. Nance didn’t earn a medal, but he’s already a declared winner at 148 South Industrial Drive in Orange City, Fla.

“I really am so blessed with our great customers,” Nance says. “During that time, we had gone off the grid. We were not answering phones. Just from our voicemails, our customers were praying for us. Our customers—it is amazing how they love us and we love them.”

Here’s to going for gold at WFCT 2022, Jimmy.

What is your why? What keeps you pushing forward, even during difficult seasons? Share your story in the comments below or email me at ccollier@glass.com. I look forward to hearing from you.

This blog is from Focus on Film, the weekly e-newsletter that covers the latest news regarding window film and related products, including paint protection film. Click HERE to sign up—there is no charge. Interested in a deeper dive? Free subscriptions to Window Film magazine in print or digital format are available. Subscribe at no charge HERE.

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4 comments
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  1. Jimmy you’re a fine example of don’t quit.

  2. I’m amazed by this! Jimmy and his wife are so awesome and just humble and kind. I watched him compete against many younger installers. To see him make the finals after COVID was a feat that no other could match. Glad you and you family are OK!!

  3. My brother in Christ.. love you very much !

  4. Great read! I’m glad you’re still kicking but, Jimmy!

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